Google is planning to launch a voice-controlled Assistant application for Android, which would focus on helping users accomplish real-life goals, according to reports.

The Assistant app and 'goal-oriented search' in general will be a key focus at Mountain View throughout 2012, following last year's social endeavours, says TechCrunch.

Assistant will be instantly compared to Apple's Siri, but the plan is to 'go beyond' Apple's iPhone 4S offering, by helping you make decisions, rather than simply serving-up information.

TechCrunch sources say the voice-powered "do engine" is being developed by the Android team and will be powered by Google's own search engine, Google +1 and the Google+ social network.

Third-party apps lined-up

Details are thin on the ground, but the company is also thought to be plotting an API to allow third-party app developers to get on board too, which could give Google an edge over Siri.

Android already boasts some pretty stellar voice recognition technology when it comes to searching the web and inputting data, but Assistant looks like its going down the Bing route, by helping us make decisions.

The app is expected to launch in the fourth quarter of 2012, so may arrive as a headline feature in a future version of Android towards the end of the year.

Via: TechCrunch